Layouts LayOuts layouts LayOUTs

Holy mackerel. Pat and I have been working and reworking gallery wall layouts for at least three weeks now. Where does the exhibit start (i.e. what is the first wall)? Do we proceed clockwise or counterclockwise? How high up the wall is the best view? What size frames will fit the image and the amount of available wall space? How do we make sure each vignette (3 to 5 photos with one poem) maintains its own identity on the wall?

Almost done (I think). I created to-scale placeholders for each individual photo, poem, ID tag, and gallery-stipulated spacing. These placeholders were placed inside a Photoshop file (6 files for each wall space we're laying out) in individual layers so each element can be moved about the wall space. Then Pat took these files and added an overlay that was a photo of the actual wall in the gallery. Pat picked our starting point, which from a layout perspective worked out really well.

The good news is that we've been able to honor the poets' request for a particular sequence on the poems. The down side to this from a curator's perspective is that the poem order also sequences the photos since specific photos are attached to the poems. We can in most cases sequence the photos within each vignette. Happily, it seems to be pulling together in a way that looks good on the walls with transitions from poem to poem and wall to wall looking smooth too.

We do need to get some variances from the gallery as it relates to the interior free space required (10 inches between each item on the wall). We don't need much. Just a tweak here and there. We'll meet with the gallery coordinator next week to talk about this - paper wall layouts in hand of course.

As much work as they've been, I can't image organizing this exhibit without them. It brings important questions to the surface and puts the possible answers into sharp focus. Next, we'll move on to planning the two walls in the hallway gallery that lead into the main exhibition space. As I said, holy mackerel. :-)

Cyd Peroni